November 10, 2020
Help for Families Dealing with Alzheimer’s and Driving
Alzheimer's & Driving
Tuesday, November 10, 2020
Driving is a skill that requires clear thinking, attention, anticipation and swift decision-making skills. The development of Alzheimer’s often makes driving dangerous. At the same time, many drivers resist advice to set aside the keys and continue driving. Families often find themselves in a no-win situation as they try to persuade a loved one to stop driving. Learn about the effects of the disease on driving, what families can do, conversation techniques and safety tips.
For years and years most people drive safely, avoiding accidents and without traffic citations. It’s a given that driving demands attention, concentration, physical coordination and quick decision making. And then comes the onset of Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia.
The decision to stop driving can be difficult for the person with dementia as the symptoms typically develop slowly, almost imperceptibly. Adult children, family members and friends may see the decline and ignore the symptoms or just prefer not to deal with what may become a very difficult conversation.
“Alzheimer’s & Driving” is a frank discussion about how the development of Alzheimer’s and other dementias may impact driving and how conversations about setting aside the keys can be done. The workshop will be offered by Pierce County Aging & Disability Resources in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter.
Two presentation will be offered online in November:
or by phone at 253-215-8782 or 888 788 0099 (Toll Free). Webinar ID: 939 8158 4550
or by phone at 253-215-8782 or 888 788 0099 (Toll Free). Webinar ID: 936 1505 7524
“For families dealing with Alzheimer’s, one of the most dreaded conversations is that around driving,” said Aaron Van Valkenburg, Manager of Pierce County Aging & Disability Resources. “A person with dementia may perceive giving up driving as a loss of independence, another step in a long line of losses. In our culture, having a car and driving when and where we want to go is a part of who we are. But for a family aware of the risks posed by continued driving, there may be a strong need for driving to end.”
In some cases, families may notice subtle changes while riding with a loved one with Alzheimer’s. They may see unexplained scratches or dents on a car. There may be examples of disorientation or forgetfulness. Or a driver may experience visuospatial issues in keeping the car safely on the highway.
“Alzheimer’s & Driving” will be presented by Maggie Christofferson from the Washington State Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The online event is free and open to the public. No RSVP is required. For more information call (253) 798-4600.